Many websites today are hardly recognizable when you compare them with the websites of ten, or even five, years ago. We see lots of video and other visuals, more mobile-friendly user experiences, some longer content, more experts finding their online niches, and heavily customer-centered stories to improve content marketing. Read on for seven key trends that we at Maxburst see in 2019. 

Visual Trends

Designs are ever evolving on the web, and various industries have their own trends and preferences. Here are just a few.

Cinemagraphs

We often come across business owners who are frustrated with the appeal of their websites. They want a site that holds visitors’ attention, keeps visitors on their webpages longer, and displays the branded creativity of the company. As subtle animations within still photos, cinema graphs accomplish these goals. According to Tripwire Magazine, cinemagraphs were introduced in New York by fashion photographer Jamie Beck and motion graphics designer Kevin Burg. Brands like Coca Cola and Tiffany & Co. use them in advertising. As competition for ad and page views increases, we anticipate that the creative use of cinemagraphs and other innovative graphics will also grow.

3D Imaging

Web designers use 3D to show depth, as well as the inside of objects. This allows viewers to examine cross-sections and the inner workings of products and devices. 3D is used in medicine, scientific visualization, mapping, marketing, and other scenarios in which alternate points of view are very important. Interested readers can see a wide variety of examples here. As medicine, science, and technology continue to thrive, we anticipate that 3D will also become more ubiquitous.

New Designs

We have seen many visual changes in the past few years. For example, animations and other videos bring more and more webpages to life. Geometric shapes and patterns enhance the aesthetics of a wide variety of webpages. Bold colors make a statement and are becoming popular across industries. We have also been noticing typography changes. These design preferences will continue to evolve in 2018 as industry landscapes change.

Mobile Trends

According to Comscore, the use of mobile devices has doubled over the past three years. As mobile device screen sizes have expanded, and data speed and availability has improved, people reach for their ever-handy smartphones and tablets.  The increasing use of mobile devices also effects web design. Here are a few of the changes we’re seeing:

Responsive Web Design

Responsive websites utilize code that adapts to the platform you use. People who view webpages on their desktop will have a different layout and user experience from mobile website visitors. Responsive web design is a continuing trend as more and more users browse with their smartphones and tablets. Google favors mobile-friendly websites, and company representatives say that the search engine may demote pages that “frustrate mobile visitors.” For example, sites featuring video not playable on mobile devices may notice a drop in Google search ranking.

Designs Favoring Mobile

We use a variety of design tactics that work well across devices and are inspired by mobile platforms. For example, split content/split-screen websites display several messages on a single webpage, allowing for scrolling and proportions that adapt to the device used to browse. Full-screen forms are easier to see while using a smartphone or tablet with a smaller screen. In addition, hidden navigation menus stay out of the user’s way until needed.

Illustrations and Custom Typography

According to Search Engine Journal, when website visitors engage with a website and stay on that site longer, the chance of a conversion increases. A conversion occurs when a website visitor takes action or purchases a product after viewing the site. To engage visitors and keep them on webpages longer, we use illustrations and custom typography, among other methods. For example, as we prepared a mobile-friendly site for the travel company Marazul Tours, we added custom typography and illustrations to draw attention to the brand and spark conversions. For Marazul Tours, conversions happen when a website visitor fills out a form to request more information about the company’s vacation tour packages.

Content Trends

More Long Form Content

Traditionally, web designers and content writers have used the 500-800-word guideline for blog posts. However, we have noticed an increasing use of long form content. Definitions vary, so at Maxburst, we use a guideline of 1,000 words or longer for long form content.

The added length gives experts the space they need to share their knowledge, as long as their additional content is interesting or important to their target audience. Interested users may find the longer content to be more valuable, and therefore more shareable across social media. Such quality content also ranks very well in Google, According to Search Engine Land. Since the length is well suited to storytelling, it may also increase conversion rates. For example, long sales letters tell stories behind common problems for their target audience, and they make the results come alive.

Storytelling

Telling brand stories has many more uses besides sales letters. Stories are more impactful than features and benefits alone. For example, technology is valuable for its impact on people’s lives. Nonprofits garner donations by sharing stories of individuals and communities served by their programs. Universities write features on faculty and their research projects. When prospective buyers or donors feel the pain or the passion behind the product, they can better appreciate the solution and understand the results.

Keeping up with design trends can seem to be a complex endeavor, but if approached in a correct manner, it doesn’t take long to promote a brand that potential customers can identify and connect with. The list of unique trends above will help your business stand out from its competitors and bring your company’s vision to life. As always, the talented people at MAXBURST are available to discuss any web branding and marketing strategies in more detail so feel free to reach out to them when the need arises.